China asks Indian students to stay in touch with their Chinese colleges

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Beijing: The Chinese government has asked hundreds of Indian students stranded back home due to the coronavirus pandemic to remain in touch with their respective colleges. It has asked the Indian students to follow instructions to protect their academic progress through online courses. The move has come about as foreign students are still not allowed to enter China.

Over 23,000 Indian students studied different courses in Chinese universities and colleges. Among them over 21,000 students were enrolled to study MBBS, according to last year’s data. Most of these students left for India during the Chinese New Year holidays in January. It was just around the time when the coronavirus pandemic began spreading in China. Since then international travel has been badly disrupted.

“At present, foreign students in China cannot enter the country for the time being. However, the Chinese government attaches great importance to the protection of the legitimate rights and interests of foreign students in China,” the Chinese Ministry of Education told the Indian Embassy here.

Earlier, the Indian Embassy took up with the Chinese officials the concerns of a large number of Indian students. It came after an official announcement that foreign students and teachers will not return to their colleges until further notice.

In its response, the Chinese Education Ministry said: “It requires relevant universities in China to maintain close contacts with the students, immediately notify relevant information and try their best to protect students’ academic progress through online courses, properly respond to students’ reasonable demands and help solve their practical difficulties.”

The Indian Embassy here also issued a statement here Tuesday. “In view of the fact that the epidemic situation in the world is still unclear and relevant policies on entry and exit in China are being gradually adjusted, it is suggested that Indian students should maintain close contact with relevant Chinese Colleges and Universities and arrange to study in China in strict accordance with the suggestions and guidance of the Colleges/Universities,” the Indian Embassy said quoting Chinese officials in a press release.

“Indian students are accordingly advised to remain in touch with their respective Universities/Colleges, the Indian Embassy said, adding that they are advised to monitor the website of the Indian Embassy/Consulates in China and their social media channels to remain updated about the evolving situation in respect of the return of foreign students to China.”

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